Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Product Swap S'More #2

We are linking up again to share with you some great TPT products. 
I am back today to share with you an AH-MAZING resource from Miss DeCarbo
Sugar and Spice
It really is truly amazing! After just 6 weeks of instruction, two of my students are recognizing sight words and really reading with very little problems! How I wish I had had this product back in September...

First let me say, I teach several English Language Learners. Two of the students featured spoke little to no English back in November when they entered my classroom. We spent the better part of the school year learning English and then letters and sounds. They have just begun to really put the reading pieces together in the past 6 weeks. 
Using the Sight Word Fluency Builders is very easy to prep for your students. The set includes 34 fluency builders targeting 3 sight words per builder. Each builder incorporates word reading, phrase/sentence reading, and comprehension through illustration. I know we all LOVE assessments, which are include both in a pre and post assessment form. It also includes flashcards for the 100 sight words. 
Over the last 6 weeks, I have used 2 builders a week with my ELL students. On Monday, I introduce the 3 sight words with the flashcards. We practice reading, spelling, and copying the sight words. Then I give them the fluency builder. First, we talk about the word- how many letters, what vowels, etc. Then they complete the word hunt box by highlighting the word as it is read. They practice one word at a time.
Next, we choral read the phrases/sentences. The students then read for independent practice. At this time, this group of students needs to track their print. 
After their first practice session, they color in the smiley face.
On Tuesday, we review the word hunt box. By now, my students know after we review the box, they need to color-code the words in the sentences. 
Then they get right to reading! 
For the second read, I have them read to the group. 
I love how she self-corrects on to in. She also knew exactly where to go when I asked her to go back and reread because she missed a word. I also asked her to highlight the word "in" because she swapped it for "on." 
I am so proud of these two, as they have come so far! 
After they read to the group, I have them read it to me again. 
The final step is to illustrate the sentence.
I start the next fluency builder on Wednesday and continue on Thursday  On Fridays, they practice both builders again. They also go on a word hunt to find the sight words in text. 
My students keep their fluency builders in a folder. The folder is then placed in their book box. They love to go back and reread the past lessons.

Kuddos to Miss DeCarbo at Sugar & Spice for such a fantastic resource!
I promise, this is one resource you need to have if you teach kindergarten or first grade.

Head on over to Miss DeCarbo to see her product review! Follow the linky to see the other great products we are showcasing this week.
Sugar and Spice

Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Magical Product Swap and Graphing

It's that time again! Mrs. Stanford is hosting the Magical Product Swap. I was paired up with Tamera from
I love to see what other teachers are doing in their classrooms. It gets even better when you can swap products with another teacher. Tamera was sweet enough to share with me her data unit. It was the perfect assessment tool for my students when we completed our data study.
I began the graphing unit with a review of sorting and classifying. We spent 3 days sorting objects by their attributes and then moved onto tally marks. I began my review of tally marks by reading 
(I just love the MathStart books. The kids love them too!)
I gave the students buckets of shells. The students worked with their math partners to decide on attributes to identify the shells. Then I modeled for the kids how we collect data. 
They did a quick tally chart on their dry-erase boards to show the data for their shell buckets.
The next day, I reviewed the lesson with a SMARTboard activity. Then it was time for them to show me their learning and thinking. (This lesson was originally planned for my formal observation. But at last minute, it was cancelled.)
I found this great resource on TPT. 
These were intended for math stations, but I had other plans!
The math partners were given bags of things to sort.
Once they had completed the sort, they had to create a tally chart; all by themselves.
First they drew the chart and developed a title.

 Then they had to label, count, and record their data with tally marks.
 (Title: Movie Stuff   Data: Popcorn, Camera, and Action)
Then they had to make it POP!
 When they were complete, the pairs presented their tally charts. They also explained what the data told them, based on the questions from Tamera's data collection pack. This project took the course of the week to complete.
The next week, we moved onto picture and bar graphs.
I began this lesson with a reading of
Again, I followed the same format for bar graphs as I did with tally charts. There was lots of practice with sorting and graphing. Most of this week, we used the SMARTboard, so I don't have any photos.
Here is my model bar graph, which was taken from the SMARTboard tally chart we created the previous lesson. 
 On Thursday, I got a last minute final evaluation scheduled. Which worked out perfectly, because it was time for the students to transfer their tally chart data to a bar graph. 
They drew out their own graphs. 
 Glued on their data labels.
 Added their graphing lines, titles, and labels.
 Then they had to explain to me how they transferred their tally chart to a bar graph. Again, they were presented with the question format from the Data Collection pack.
Here are the final graphs...

I love how this unit came out. The kids were so proud of their work. They were eager to explain to my principal everything they learned over two weeks. It was a shining moment for them, and she was really impressed.
For their final assessment, I used Tamera's Data pack. You can see from their answers, some need a little more practice with distinguishing when they need to name the answer or provide a number. 
It was a great assessment tool. 

The data collection pack was perfect for assessment. I was really able to narrow down which students needed reteaching and where based on the questions presented. 
Lots of thanks to Tamera for letting me review this pack! =)
Follow the blog button to visit Tamera.
She is reviewing my Working With Words for the ew, oo, ui, and ue pattterns.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Friday Feedback Frenzy!

As teachers, I know most of us love to get feedback on our lessons when we are observed or when another teacher takes our idea and runs with it. 
I feel the same way about my TPT products. I really enjoy reading your feedback on my products. I would love for you to share how you used the product and what worked (or maybe didn't work) in your classroom. Everyone has room to grow, and I am no exception. 
Plus, there is a benefit to you when you leave feedback at TPT. Did you know that you earn credits for future purchases? Just go to your purchases page and right under the title of the product, you will see a thumbs up and the blinking words "Provide Feedback." Just click it and off you go! 
To make it even sweeter for you, if you leave feedback TONIGHT for any product you have purchased from my store,
I will send you a freebie this weekend! 
Just email me at Ms.SmartyPants@rocketmail.com with your TPT user/purchaser name and the name of the product you previously purchased. I will send out a freebie by Sunday evening. 
Go on now, you know you want to have a Feedback Frenzy! 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Working With Words Update

For the past month, I have been revamping my word work station. My kids were getting bored and restless with the same old activities. So Working With Words was born. 
I thought I would share how I am using Working With Words in my classroom. =)

First, I introduce the phonics pattern. If there are two (or more) patterns for a specific sound, I will introduce them as well. Usually, we create a list of words for the patterns. After creating the list, I put a focus on just pattern one for Monday & Tuesday. The lessons follow the same pattern on Monday & Tuesday, with a slight difference. 

Next, the students go back to their seats for word building. The students cut out their letters and line them up on the table. I give directions by stating exactly what to do. For example, "Please build the word glue." I will remind them of the pattern we are working on for the first few words. (On Monday, they just build. I have them save their letters in a snack size baggie. On Tuesday, they build and then record the word.) Sorry, I forgot to take a picture! =(

For the word work station, there are two games.
The first choice is Roll A Word. They play this game with a partner by rolling the die, reading the word, and writing the word. 

The second choice is the board game. The game board is simple enough that it only takes one model and they know how to play! They simply read a word, if it is correct, they roll the die and move forward. 
 This game is played in pairs as well. For this class, they work better in pairs verses groups of four. 
When we meet again for whole group instruction, I projected the Word Reading Sentences on the board. First, we echo read the sentences. Then the students take turns reading the sentence and circling the word with the pattern. 
The other students are following along, tracking print while whisper reading, and locating the pattern words. 
The students partner up and read the sentences again. This has tremendously helped many of my students with their fluency.
This activity is done on both Monday & Tuesday. 

 After each student has had their turn, they then spend the remaining few minutes playing Roll A Word with their copy. To save paper, I have them write in pencil on Monday and then highlight the words on Tuesday. 

I have to say, these are by far the best products I have made yet. 
 I never dreamed what the impact would or could be for my students. They are mastering the phonics patterns and having a great time! I have watched their fluency increase (a great deal) and they are now attacking longer words instead of shying away from them. All of that, and it meets Common Core Standards! =)
Working With Words for oi & oy is now in my TPT store. It's 50% off for the next 24 hours! Grab it now...=) 
And just for fun, leave a comment with your email and which Working With Words you would like. I will pick 3 winners tomorrow evening! =) 
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